March 10, 2008
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - For the second consecutive year and second time in school history, Notre Dame has had two players named to the BIG EAST Conference first team. Sophomore forward Luke Harangody (Schererville, Ind.) and junior guard Kyle McAlarney (Staten Island, N.Y.) each earned first-team all-conference honors for the first times in their careers.
Harangody, who was named to the league all-rookie team in 2007, was a unanimous selection, while McAlarney garners an all-conference accolade of any kind for the first time in his career. Connecticut was the only other team to place two of its players on the all-conference first team.
The Irish duo was selected by a vote of the league's head coaches who were not permitted to vote for their own players. The tandem helped Notre Dame to their best-ever record since joining the BIG EAST in 1995-96 as the Irish finished with a program-best 14-4 record (most wins in conference history) and concluded the season tied for second in the league final regular-season standings after being chosen ninth in the league pre-season poll (one that also was determined by a vote of the league's 16 head coaches).
The selection of Harangody and McAlarney to the league's first team marks the third straight year that Notre Dame has had at least one player named to that squad. Russell Carter and Colin Falls both copped first-team honors in 2007, while Chris Quinn was a first-team honoree in 2006.
Harangody and McAlarney become the seventh and eighth players in eight seasons that have earned first-team all-conference honors under eighth year head coach Mike Brey. It also marks the eighth consecutive year that Notre Dame has had a player named to one of the all-conference teams under Brey.
In addition to Carter, Falls and Quinn, Irish players who have earned all-conference honors have included Pat Garrity (1996 and 1997), Troy Murphy (1999, 2000 and 2001), Ryan Humphrey (2002) and Matt Carroll (2003).
Harangody became just the second player in BIG EAST history to lead the league in both scoring and rebounding in the same season as he averaged 23.3 points and 11.3 rebounds. The only other player to lead the conference in both categories was Murphy during his sophomore campaign in 1999-2000 as he averaged 21.7 points and 10.3 boards. Murphy also led the league in scoring during his junior season (2000-01) as he averaged 22.8 points per game. Garrity (1997-98) led the league in scoring when he netted 24.1 points per game.
Harangody netted 30-plus points in three conference games and 20-plus points in 13 games. He scored 40 points against Louisville that marked the first 40-point performance by an Irish player in a BIG EAST game. He also recorded 12 double-doubles in conference outings.
In 30 games overall, Harangody averaged 21.0 points and 10.3 rebounds and led the Irish with 17 doubles. He scored in double figures in all but one game and heads into the BIG EAST Championship owning a career-best 28-game double-figure scoring streak.
McAlarney also produced three 30-point outings this season that included a career-best 32-point performance against Connecticut. He also set the Notre Dame single-game three-point mark when nailed nine three-pointers en route to a 30-point effort against Syracuse in the Irish win over the Orange.
In BIG EAST play, he led the conference in three-point field goals made with 62 (3.44 per game) and also in three-point field goal percentage (.463). McAlarney was Notre Dame's second-leading scorer overall (15.0 ppg.) and also in BIG EAST play (15.6). He started all 30 contests and netted double figures in all but seven of those games. McAlarney also topped the 20-point mark on seven occasions.
He also finished second on the team with 108 assists.
Notre Dame is 24-6 overall and earned a first-round bye as the No. 3 seed overall in the BIG EAST Championship after finishing league play with a 14-4 record. The 14 wins represented the most by and Irish team ever in BIG EAST regular-season play.
2007-08 All-BIG EAST First Team
2007-08 All-BIG EAST Second Team
2007-08 All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention
BIG EAST All-Rookie Team
* = denotes unanimous selection